Finally, it's the home stretch for my finger and this incredibly bulky bandage/splint that I've been wearing around for the past two weeks--the bandages come off tomorrow! (and permanently, I hope). And, at last, I'll be able to cook and bake and wash dishes again in the kitchen, shower without a plastic bag over one hand, hold my camera, properly take notes in class and not have them look like a kindergärtner's chicken scratch, play vibraphone and piano--all of these little things for which we totally take our hands for granted. (And, not to mention, walk around without having people stare at my bandaged-up middle finger. Even the proprietress at a local Chinese bakery today stared at my finger while I was fishing out change and asked accusingly, "What did you do to your hand?" --oh, the Chinese sense of privacy!)
Anyways, whilst I await anxiously these last hours prior to my finger's freedom, I wanted to share a recipe that I made a few weeks ago--just in time for you all to use up the last of the summer fruits before they disappear altogether from the markets! This is such an incredibly simple and yet super sophisticated recipe that I stumbled upon when I was browsing for random recipes online, and it's a great way to enjoy fresh fruit with just a little bit of a twist: prosecco-lime jelly with white and yellow nectarines and blueberries.
This dessert really takes eating fresh fruit to a whole new level. Here you have crunchy summertime nectarines and succulent blueberries encased and suspended in a delicately-jiggly, just-tart-enough, and just-sweet-enough prosecco-lime jelly. The jelly melts in your mouth and just lightly coats the fruit with ephemeral whiffs of white wine and hints of lime reminiscent of the last lingering moments of summer we're having now that September's right around the corner. And having the jelly truly transforms the experience of eating fruit, too: I made some small, portable servings and took them to the office, watching as people were fascinated and enchanted by the magical combination of fruit hovering in the surrounding jelly.
Now, I'm off to contemplate what the first dessert I should make after regaining use of my right hand is. Suggestions???
Read on for the recipe...
Prosecco Jelly with Lime, Nectarines, and Blueberries
roughly adapted from Bon Appetit,August 2004
makes ~4-6 large individual serving sizes, depending on glass sizes
1 750 ml bottle Prosecco
3/4 cup cold water
2 Tbspn unflavored gelatin
1/3 cup sugar*
zest of 1 lime
juice of 1 lime
yellow nectarines (~3)
white nectarines (~3-4)
blueberries (a lot! > 1 lb.)
1. Pour the prosecco into a large bowl and set aside.
2. In a small saucepan, combine the water and gelatin. Let sit for about five minutes as the gelatin softens and blooms.
3. Add the sugar to the gelatin and water and cook over medium-low heat until the sugar completely dissolves, but do not let the water boil. Remove from heat and whisk into the prosecco. Add the lime zest and juice. Let cool at room temperature briefly.
4. Slice or chop the nectarines as desired.
5. Layer the nectarine pieces and the blueberries in the serving containers that you are using. Pour the prosecco mixture over the fruit until the fruit is completely covered.
6. Chill until the jelly has solidified, about four hours.
Tip: I like a little bit of crunch in the nectarines to add texture to the fruit and gelatin mixture, so I used firm nectarines that were just turned ripe but hadn't yet softened up.
Tip: I like a lot of fruit in my jelly cups, so I really packed it in here, which is while I used over a pound of berries!